Small Wars Journal

In Colombia, Two Rebel Groups Take Different Paths

In Colombia, Two Rebel Groups Take Different Paths by Nicholas Casey and Joe Parkins Daniels – New York Times

The crowd gathered here in the capital, wearing white shirts and waving campaign signs, as what had once been Colombia’s largest rebel group opened its campaign for the presidency.

But at a northern port, bombs exploded as a different group continued to attack. Five police officers were killed and more than 40 were wounded in the city of Barranquilla in a bombing at a police station. A faction of the National Liberation Army, the guerrilla organization known as the E.L.N., claimed responsibility.

The contrasting scenes this weekend highlight the challenge Colombia now faces in its road to peace. While the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, known as the FARC, have signed a peace deal with the government and entered politics, many guerrillas of the E.L.N. seem bent on pressing their long battle against the state.

On Monday, President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia, whose government had been negotiating with the rebels in Ecuador, said he was suspending the talks.

“My patience and the patience of the people has its limits,” Mr. Santos said to applause from residents of La Palma, a town he was visiting about 50 miles from the capital. Mr. Santos said the negotiations would remain frozen until “there’s a coherence from the E.L.N. between their words and their actions.” …

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